Everything You Need to Know about Zion National Park
More than a century after becoming Utah’s first national park, Zion National Park remains one of the state’s most popular outdoor treasures. From rugged sandstone cliffs and colorful slot canyons to rushing waterfalls framed by lush hanging gardens, the park is home to some of the most majestic landscapes in the country. Visitors come from all over the globe to explore its 232 square miles of scenic canyon country and enjoy fun outdoor activities like hiking, biking, birdwatching, canyoneering, climbing and more.
With all that scenic beauty and outdoor adventure, Zion National Park should definitely be on your bucket list. If you’re planning to visit, brushing up on some basic information about the park can help you make the most of your trip. You can also request a free copy of our Southern Utah Vacation Guide for even more info on the park and local tips to the area!
A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO ZION NATIONAL PARK
THE PARK AT-A-GLANCE
Physical Address: 1 Zion Park Blvd. State Route 9 Springdale, UT 84767
Park Hours: The park is open to guests 24 hours per day, every day of the year. Operating hours for park facilities and shuttles change by season.
Entrance Fees: Passes are $35 per private vehicle (non-commercial) and are valid for one week. Visitors without a car may purchase a walking pass for $20 per person. Visitors 15 and under are free.
GETTING AROUND THE PARK
Private vehicles are not allowed to drive on Zion Canyon Scenic Drive for most of the year. Instead, a park shuttle delivers visitors from the Zion Canyon Visitor Center to popular destinations around the park. The shuttle runs every 6-10 minutes from 7a.m. to 6 p.m. and is free to use with park access.
TOP HIKES IN ZION NATIONAL PARK
Zion National Park is home to a variety of incredible hiking trails that wind through the beauty of deep canyon country. Park trails range from easy to advanced, so families and adventurers alike can find a route to enjoy. The most popular trails are located in Zion Canyon and are easily accessible by the park shuttle.
Emerald Pools Trail. This segmented loop trail leads to three levels of dramatic waterfalls and sparkling pools in a small side canyon. The lower pools are easy to reach, the middle pools are a bit tougher, and there’s a challenging climb to the upper pool.
Angel’s Landing. The park’s most popular trail is a strenuous climb up a near-vertical cliff to a lofty panoramic summit. It is recommended for advanced hikers only. As of April 2022, permits are now required to access the Angel’s Landing trail.
The Narrows. This out-and-back day hike follows the Virgin River through the famous Narrows of Zion National Canyon. The route is strenuous and involves wading, walking and sometimes swimming in the water.
OTHER ACTIVITIES IN ZION NATIONAL PARK
Not a fan of hiking? No problem! You could fill several days with outdoor adventure at ZNP and never do the same thing twice. Other popular park activities include:
- Horseback Riding
- Ranger-led Activities
No matter what adventure suits your style, we definitely recommend you stop by the Visitors Center on your way in to grab a map and get some expert advice from the park guides on how to fill your day.
STAY CLOSE TO ZION NATIONAL PARK
Stay close to all Zion National Park has to offer in a Family Time Vacation Rentals property. We offer a variety of comfortable vacation rentals right near the park so you’ll have easy access to your Zion adventure. Book a private home at Mt. Carmel Junction to be just 10 minutes from the park’s east entrance in a cozy space built for family fun!